The Embassy of the Republic of Croatia in the United Kingdom, with the support of the Croatian Tourist Board in London, organized the ceremony titled “110 Years of Kaštela Tourism” at the Croatian Embassy in London, reports the City of Kaštela on January 31, 2019.
The presentation in London was organized on the initiative of Davorka Žanić Dražić, economic advisor at the Embassy in London.
“In today’s world, there is a growing trend of branding countries through wine and cultural tourism, so I thought that the cultural and historical heritage of Kaštela and the story of the Kaštela Zinfandel certainly draws attention outside the borders of Croatia, especially considering that London is the seat of the most prestigious wine fair in the world,” Dražić said.
The exhibition presented the story of the beginnings of tourism in Kaštela, related to the launch of the railway line in 1877 and the establishment of steamships with Split, Rijeka, and Trieste, as well as the beginnings of organized tourism in 1909 and the first board for foreigners opened by Czech doctor Henrik Šoulavy. In the tourist offer at the time, visitors had the opportunity to enjoy various activities and medical services, as well as excursions, Dalmatian specialties, and wine.
On this occasion, the history of Kaštela wines and viticulture was presented with a focus on the story of the Kaštela Zinfandel (Crljenak) a genetically identical variety to the well-known American sort of Zinfandel. Professor Braća Radić and Živko Skračić prepared a video and gave a lecture about this Kaštela variety.
The event was also attended by the television crew of popular British television Channel 4, which generates millions of viewers, reports Dalmacija Danas.
The filming’s goal was to show the wine tourism and culture of Kaštela and thus position Croatia as a desirable tourist destination on the British market. A special guest at the presentation was the award-winning British artist Aggy Dadan who was inspired by her visit to Kaštela and everything she had the chance to see in the area. Thus, Dadan presented the chocolate relief “From Split to Trogir”, where she used the Kaštela Zinfandel. The artist also made a chocolate sculpture of a Kaštela woman in folk costume which will be featured on the Channel 4 show “Extreme Cake Makers”.
The Channel 4 broadcast is of great importance for the development not only of Kaštela but also of the unique tourist offers in Croatia, which are increasingly sought by the British market. The episode is scheduled to air mid-April 2019, which is excellent given that it is in the peak period of the pre-season.
The overall presentation, hosted by Ambassador Igor Pokaz, was attended by representatives of many prominent media houses, some of them being CNBC, The Sunday Times Travel Magazine, The Mail on Sunday, The Telegraph, The Financial Times and The Independent, representatives of travel agencies, including IKB Travel, Prestige Holidays and Angela Shanley Associates Ltd, distributors specializing in undiscovered wines, Novel Wines, wine investors and various businessmen and wine lovers, representatives of British-Croatian Associations and Academic Communities of University College London, Cambridge and Oxford and others. The story of Kaštela also interested representatives of British Airways, which has introduced direct flights to Kaštela and Split from London City Airport for the first time this summer.
The Kaštela delegation at this event was represented by Deputy Mayor of Kaštela, Jadranka Matok-Bosančić, Tourist Board Director Nada Maršić, and others.